You and your ex are in the midst of a divorce. You know that your child's life is very unstable right now. You feel badly that your children are going through this whole situation. There are some ways that you can make the divorce and subsequent child custody agreement a bit easier for your child. These three questions are a good starting point for you to ensure your actions aren't causing stress for your child.
How can I support my child?
Your children are accustomed to having you and your ex in the same home. Even if you aren't there all the time, you can still be an active supporter for your child. Attend school functions and other events that are important to your child. Make yourself available to help with homework or other issues. Try to stay as involved as you can in the daily happenings of your child. Finally, don't bash your ex in front of your daughter or son. Even though you and she don't get along now, she is still the mother of your children. Respecting her now might be difficult, but it can make the transition much easier on your children.
What concerns do I have about my child?
As you work on the child custody agreement with your ex, you must ensure that your concerns are addressed. One aspect of child custody that causes a lot of concern is the decision-making power. You and your ex must decide who is going to make which decisions for your children. This includes the legal, medical, and educational decisions. If you have any specific concerns, such as specific medical care or religious preference, discuss these with your attorney to determine if addressing them in the custody order is necessary.
How will this decision affect my child?
Child custody orders aren't always easy on the parents. Instead, a child's best interests are the basis of these agreements. When situations come up that require you to make decisions, think about how each option will impact your child. For example, if your ex calls to say she is sick and can't pick up the kids for her weekend, you could be upset that she backed out, but you could choose to be thankful that your children won't be exposed to her germs. The same is true if you must seek child custody modifications. Always ask yourself how each decision will affect your child.